"Immersive" van Gogh Experience?


Loitering Member
Has anyone been to one of these so-called immersive van Gogh exhibits? I think one is coming to my city's art museum soon and, of course, I'm curious, but I wonder if it might feel disorienting in any way?
Hi Lamar, I went to the one in Atlanta a few months ago. I understood going in what it was - and wasn't. It wasn't meant to be a display of actual van Gogh works, so anyone who thinks it's a traveling museum catalog will be disappointed.

It's a show designed for the general public, really to raise awareness of the beauty of his work, his struggles with mental illness and lack of sales. Numerous quotes from him, pulled from letters from Vincent to his brother Theo and others, his thoughts on his art and his processes. Copies of his works are enlarged to what I thought was a lovely and thrilling effect in a large room, surrounding the seated participants.



Music is playing while his background story is told, quotes are displayed, etc.

Other ephemera is around:



At the end, you have the option to go on a virtual reality tour, which we did and found it trippy, but a total blast. (Got slightly nauseated from it, actually. I'm such a lightweight!) 🤣

If you just want to settle in and have a visit with Vincent, from a purely art appreciation perspective, there are worse ways to spend an afternoon. I loved it. ❤
Yes perhaps for the general public... sadly. From what I’ve read there is more than one version of these “shows”

Somehow I dont think Vincent would enjoy a smorgasbord of light shows and digital effects when contrasting those to his walks in the countryside enjoying and painting nature in the sunlight.

There is nothing quite like seeing the paintings in person.
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I saw a museum show of many, many of his paintings and did the audio tour where the letters between him and Theo were read, and it was intense. Maybe the most impacting exhibition I have ever seen, so this thing would pale in comparison, but maybe it would still be a nice experience and open people up to the importance of his work.
I've avoided these. In the 60s I would have loved such a light show - which is all it is to my way of thinking. I did go to one about the psychedelic experience in the museum in San Francisco, but all it did was remind me of how primitive light shows were then. I've met Vincent's work directly in many museums and in my own collection of books of his art and his letters. His art juxtaposed with his letters and his influences is always an illuminating experience, even for non-artists. But these light shows leave me cold. Yes, I get that it's really for the uninformed public, and if it gets them any enlightenment about the art and the artist, I should not turn up my nose. But you won't find me turning up at the show. And my understanding is that there are maybe half a dozen touring by different companies, so you'd best do your research on quality before shelling out for one.
Light shows: When I was young, my friends and I would get high as fuck and see the laser show at the Observatory. They showed it while they played The Dark Side of the Moon. Trippy! But it was such a primitive light show. Ha! :ROFLMAO:
Terri, P.Barrie, Arty, Bartc - thanks so much for your input! My sister is interested in the "exhibit," and I think it might be worthwhile in terms of her appreciation of the life and art of van Gogh, and frankly, I'm curious about the "experience" myself. Now y'all have given me good food for thought, for which I thank you again.

And Terri, you touched on the one practical aspect that I was concerned about - guess which one 🤣
I saw this film and thought it was wonderful for the color experience.

Loving Vincent
Each of the film's 65,000 frames is an oil painting on canvas, created using the same techniques as Van Gogh by a team of 125 artists drawn from around the globe.
Light shows: When I was young, my friends and I would get high as fuck and see the laser show at the Observatory. They showed it while they played The Dark Side of the Moon. Trippy! But it was such a primitive light show. Ha! :ROFLMAO:
Oh, those are actually light shows, and I loved them, too!! Pink Floyd seems to have been written for lasers. 😆

This isn't that. Just as I cautioned that anyone looking for a serious exhibit would be disappointed, anyone looking for a "light show" would be as well. I can only speak to this particular tour, which included dates of events, a time-line of his works, and influences. Obviously it's designed to make money, but it's not really worth sneering at, either. It's well-intentioned.
Ha! My sister went without me! Took something for motion sickness and went with her hubby. They loved it. It appeared, from photos and short viddies by my BIL, to be very high-resolution, crisply focused, and rich in saturated colors. It might be nice to see his brushstrokes displayed very large, but then, there would be no chance to linger as in a real exhibit.

But anyway, they really enjoyed it. As was mentioned above, the "experience" allowed for a chance to learn more about Vincent's life and to be introduced to more of his art in a novel way.